- Take a comfortable seat (Easy Pose or Sukhasana, for example).
- Straighten your back. Try to keep your spine, neck, and head perpendicular to the ground.
- Close your eyes. Direct your attention inward and keep it within throughout the exercise.
- Take 5-8 deep breaths. Breathe through your nose rather than your mouth.
- Take a deep breath and breathe out slowly through your nose making a humming sound. Take in a full breath again and exhale while humming. Repeat the exercise for approximately twenty minutes. Set a timer to keep the exercise to 20 min. Your subjective time perception may not be sufficiently precise.
- When the timer rings, silence it, and sit for several more minutes, breathing slowly and keeping your attention within your body.
- Finish the exercise by taking a deep, slow inhale-exhale.
Feel free to resume your daily activities.
Be sure to perform the exercise on a daily basis for two-three weeks.
Chose the time that works best for you. The morning hours are good because you have more energy, provided you have no worrisome thoughts while preparing for the day ahead and are not under time pressure. If you do have to rush to work in the morning, move the exercise to the afternoon. Performing the exercise at a certain time of the day is advisable, but a comfortable inner climate is even more important than good timing, because your free attention is more vital for this exercise than any external factors (place, body posture, clothing, etc.)
Chose a pose that works best for you (if Sukhasaha causes discomfort, sit on a chair).
Try to keep your spine straight throughout the exercise.
Find a breathing rhythm that is comfortable for you, and breathe evenly through your nose.
Your inhale should be deep (avoid any tension) and relatively long, but shorter than the exhale; the exhale is performed with a humming sound; avoid pushing or forcing the volume and pitch of your voice.
Do not overdo it when you breathe in and out. Do not try to inhale too much air or make your exhale too long. Obviously, the hum should constitute a good portion of each breathing cycle for the exercise to have an effect, but any extra efforts in breathing are unnecessary. Focusing too much on the technique to ensure that you perform it correctly is also not recommended, as the correctness with which you perform the exercise depends upon your ATTENTION, which, for example, should not be distracted by worries that you may be doing something inaccurately.
Your attention should be focused within your body. Do not become involved in analyzing what is happening in your body or around you; try not to follow your thoughts, images, visions; do not try to monitor your performance, as simply following the steps described above is sufficient.
Your attention is the MAIN element in this exercise! Do not let your attention wander for more than a few seconds throughout the exercise. As soon as you notice that your attention is drawn away by projections of your mind, bring it back into the body.
It may be a bit difficult at first to breathe this way for 20 minutes, but you will achieve the ability to do it. Just keep in mind that it takes no fewer than 15 min of practice daily for the effect to be seen, and it will take less time with practice.
Even when you are not practicing, try to stay watchful of any inner changes (bodily sensations, emotional reactions, thinking process). Such observations improve the effect of the humming exercise significantly.